A logoless company is a faceless man.

“A logoless company is a faceless man.” This is my absolute favorite quote on the subject of branding and logo design by David Airey, from his book  Logo Design Love .  (Purchase this book  if you are a graphic desiner!)  As a marketing professional I always feel drawn to a well designed logo, brand identity or graphic design piece that  has the ability to”speak to me” and literally stop me in my tracks. No, really. It annoys and sometimes alarms my friends and family (especially when I’m driving and staring down a great billboard, or sign graphic.)

Do you own a business without a logo, or without a well designed logo?  Are you proud of the face of your company? You should be. Like it or not just as we tend to judge one another by personal appearance, we judge companies by their personal appearance. Oftentimes I am handed a business card, look at the logo design, and decide immediately if I would like to conduct business with you. Am I a design snob? Maybe. But let me tell you that people associate your business worthiness with your brand identity. So, what are the qualifying characteristics of a good design? There are many. Here are just two qualities that I admire (and are proven to be effective). These are the ones make me stop in my tracks.

 It Tells Your Story. “What exactly is it that you do?” Many times a great logo answers this question. No words necessary. Just great graphics. Katie Morgan senior designer at 300millions, designed this logo for The Guild of Food Writers. I just love the use of negative space showing a spoon inside a pen nib. Take away the copy. You are still left with a great design that tells a story. The-Food-Writers-Guild-logo-designed-by-300millionsThe Design Is Simple  (but not boring.) Stay focused on one strength. Not two. Not three. Just one. What is the one thing that you want others to identify with your brand? I know it is very tempting to want to emphasize the countless wonders of your products and services, but stay focused. What adjective would others use to describe your company? Chose your design and logo color accordingly. Use a focus group if you have to, but pick your strongest asset(s) and start from there.  An excellent example of this is Cisco’s new logo and the colors they chose for their re-branding. Cisco is not an acronim.  It is an abbreviation of “San Fransico.”

 

cisco.logo

 

 

The name “Cisco” was derived from pride in the city name,  which is why the company’s engineers insisted on using the lower case “cisco” in its early years. The logo is intended to depict the two towers of the Golden Gate Bridge. The blue color depicts prosperity, excellence and calmness, while the red color represents determination and business responsibility. It is said by John Morgridge, the 34th employee and the company’s first president that the creators of the company thought of this name while making their way to Sacramento for registration of the company. As they laid their eyes upon the Golden Gate Bridge structured in the sunlight, they decided the name of the company there and then.

Put on your best face. Hire a designer or create your own. Just don’t be the faceless man.

-Audrey Gotto

   

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Why Social Media Marketing is Still King in 2016

via SEO In 2016: What It Means For Your Content Strategy.

I love precise, easy-to-understand  articles that help me stategize my marketing efforts for my small business. To be honest, I do not often find them in the vast sea of “content articles” on the web. However, this morning I read an article written by Jessy Smulski, contributing author for Business2Community that I feel is share worthy. Click on the link at the top of the page to read the full article.

So, research shows us that these four factors are important aspects for SEO in 2016.

  1. Mobile Browsing is Boss.  Stop procrastinating on this. Get your website on par.
  2. Social is Increasingly Important. Yep. Stop thinking Facebook is a waste of your marketing time.
  3. Voice Search is a Game-Changer. People talk to their phones to find you.
  4. “Rich Answers” Are Stealing Thunder. Write your content intelligently.                                                                                                                                                                                                       SEO infographic from LeapFroggr                                   SEOInfographic

4 Ways to Optimize Your Website

Do you own or manage a local small business? If so, you’re no doubt painfully aware of the need for strong  local SEO (search engine optimization) success.  Just like your computer is the new typewriter; Local search engine optimization is the new Yellow Pages.  If you want to be found online, you must be seen online. Your website is your most important and valuable online assest, so ensure that it is properly optimized to appear high within search results. Let’s assume you do not have thousands of dollars to spend on  SEO AdWords. Here are 4 action items to boost your local SEO.

  1. Choose a domain name that reflects your business location and business typeFor example, Joe’s Lawncare located in Pittsburgh, PA  could use the domain “joeslawncarepittsburgh.com” which says it all.                   
  2. Add key words on page titles that identify with your business, its products and services and its location.            
  3. Be sure to add your business name, phone number, address and social media links on EACH INDIVIDUAL PAGE of your website, not just your homepage.                    
  4. In your website copy, be sure to mention not only your products and services, but include as much as possible about your local area. This associates your business with the nearby vicinity. Remember, we are after LOCAL optimization here. Include if possible, what sports teams plays in your city, what section of town you’re in, what special place of interest is just around the corner. Not only will this added information improve your website copy for customers, it will also boost your search visibility as a local business. 

My next post will discuss how to utilize local business listings to boost SEO success.

Here’s to your success!

Audrey Gotto

Fina Promos Website

                                                                                               

What Social Media Platforms are Best Suited to Your Business?

Wondering which Social Media Platforms your #SmallBiz should focus on? Here is a great infographic to quickly help you decide which one best suits your target audience. Click on “View Original” link at the bottom of this post to help you succeed. FOCUS on the best ones for your brand. Better to be excellent at a few than mediocre on many. -Audrey Gotto, Fina Promotions